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Former Rutgers Head Coach Kyle Flood Hired by Atlanta Falcons

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NCAA Football: Rutgers at Army Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

The reigning NFC Champion Atlanta Falcons have announced the hiring of former Rutgers head coach Kyle Flood as assistant offensive line coach. The story broke in an article by NJ.com’s Keith Sergeant yesterday. The Falcons’ announcement on Twitter that linked the press release did not focus on the hiring of Flood, but of new QB coach Bush Hamden.

The press release provides a detailed biography of Flood, including his stops at Hofstra University and the University of Delaware. It is the Hofstra connection that led to this hire, as Flood was coaching for the FCS Hofstra Pride at the same time Falcons’ Head Coach Dan Quinn was Hofstra’s running backs and later wide receiver coach.

Flood will be working with an offensive line that was credited with being a major cog in the Falcons’ impressive season in 2016-2017, culminating in a NFC Championship and a Super Bowl appearance. That appearance was marred by a shocking loss that had the New England Patriots staging the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history, beating the Falcons 34-28, after trailing them 28-3.

With his hire by the Falcons, Coach Flood will be reunited with former Rutgers wide receiver Mohamad Sanu, who just finished his first season with the Falcons. Sanu was a free agent following four seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, and signed a five-year, $32.5M contract a year ago when he joined the Falcons.

While he has made no formal announcement on Twitter, Flood is acknowledging Tweets to the news, as seen in this exchange:

Additionally, his background graphic on Twitter is a Falcons’ graphic:

The Scarlet Knights head coach from the 2012 through 2015 seasons, Flood holds the distinction of being the only head coach in Rutgers football history to take the team to bowl games in his first three seasons as head coach. He also led the team in their initial season in the Big Ten, compiling a 7-5 regular season record which was capped by a convincing 40-21 win over North Carolina in the inaugural Quick Lane Bowl in December 2014.

Kyle Flood was originally hired by former head coach Greg Shiano in 2005 as the offensive line coach. Promoted to assistant head coach in 2008, Kyle was named head coach by former athletic director Tim Pernetti. This hire was immediately following Schiano’s departure to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, just prior to National Signing Day in 2012. Flood was credited with keeping a talent-laden class intact in the time between Schiano’s departure and signing day that year.

In September 2015, a cascading number of issues, including arrests of several players (and their subsequent dismissal from the team) and Flood being accused of impermissible contact with instructors created a maelstrom that eventually engulfed Flood, leading to suspensions and fines during the season and his firing the day after the conclusion of the 2015 season.

Since his firing, Flood has kept a relatively low public profile, the exception being his appearances on Sirius XM’s College Sports Channel 84. He filled in periodically as co-host for the College Sports Today program as well as being a regular on The Tailgating Show where he previewed college games every Saturday morning this past season. There had been no widespread discussion of this hire prior to the Falcons’ announcement on February 17, 2017.

Hired with Flood was former Rutgers assistant Dave Brock, who most recently was head coach of the Delaware Fightin’ Blue Hens. Brock joined the Blue Hens following one season as Rutgers’ offensive coordinator during Kyle Flood’s first season as head coach in 2012.

In his time as head coach of the Scarlet Knights, Kyle Flood compiled a 27-24 record overall, and a bowl record of 1-2, the sole win in the Quick Lane Bowl mentioned above, and losses to Virginia Tech in 2012 in the Russell Athletic Bowl, and to Notre Dame in the Pinstripe Bowl in 2013.

Despite the difficult way his tenure as head coach ended in 2015, it has been generally agreed that Coach Flood was a coach that was close to his players, and was a true gentleman in all situations. We at On the Banks wish him well in his new position.